Back to back pageant victories are rare cases in Miss Universe. In fact it is almost frowned by the org as it almost never let it happen. However, if a back to back is close to impossible to achieve then better as well to try for a sandwich victory.
A sandwich victory is where you can win the first year, rest awhile for the second year and then bounce back at the third. Pageant aficionados observe that this kind of scenario is more common in Miss Universe than a #back2back, in fact it already happened thrice already. TRIVIA: Did you know that this could have almost happened again this decade when Miss USA Olivia Culpo won MU in 2012 and with Miss USA 2014 Nia Sanchez almost winning Miss Universe in 2014? Nia ended up as 1st runner up to Colombia’s Paulina Vega.
Let’s take a look at Miss Universe sandwich victory through the years. The first ever sandwich victory occurred when in 1954, Miss USA Miriam Stevenson won the title of Miss Universe and then followed up in 1956, with Carrol Morris winning the title. In between the two Americans was Sweden’s Hillevi Rombin who won in 1955.
The second sandwich win happened 23 years later. It happened again in 1979 when the powerhouse Venezuela won their first Miss Universe with Maritza Sayalero. Then in 1981 with just a 1 year gap, Venezuela enjoyed its second Miss Universe crown worn by Irene Saez. USA’s Shawn Weatherly won in 1980, in between the two Venezuelans.
USA achieved another sandwich victory becoming the only country to do a 2nd sandwich win in the years 1995 and 1997. Chelsi Smith won the Miss Universe crown in Namibia making as the first African-American to win the title. Then in 1997 Brook Lee of Hawaii won the Miss Universe crown making the first Asian-American to win the title. Meanwhile in the year 1996 the pageant was won by the very controversial Alicia Machado who would later cause a sensational weight gain battle with the MU owner Donald Trump.
NOTE: This is a republished article from 2014. We updated several information to make it more current but left the main thoughts as well as the original graphics of the writeup. Enjoy!
Today’s blogpost focuses on the elite few Miss Universe winners who also topped the swimsuit competition.
Back in the days, the lady who earns the highest swimsuit scores during the final night is given a special prize by the swimsuit sponsors (back in the 90’s it was Jantzen). I remember in Miss Universe 1994, Minorka Mercado (Venezuela) and Rea Tounzi (Greece) were given special citation for topping the swimsuit competition. Rea had the highest swimsuit scores during the preliminary swimsuit contest while Minorka topped the swimsuits during the finals. Neither ladies ended up with the crown but Minorka was close placing 3rd overall…
MISS UNIVERSE WINNERS WHO ARE ALSO BEST IN SWIMSUIT
1. Philippines’ Gloria Diaz – Miss Universe 1969 (18th Edition)
2. Thailand’s Porntip Nakhirunkanok – Miss Universe 1988 (37th Edition)
3. USA’s Chelsi Smith – Miss Universe 1995 (44th Edition)
4. Venezuela’s Alicia Machado – Miss Universe 1996 (45th Edition)
5. Trinidad & Tobago’s Wendy Fitzwilliam – Miss Universe 1998 (47th Edition)
6. India’s Lara Dutta – Miss Universe 2000 (49th Edition)
7. Puerto Rico’s Denise Quiñones – Miss Universe 2001 (50th Edition)
8. Russia’s Oxana Fedorova – Miss Universe 2002 (51st Edition)
9. Dominican Republic’s Amelia Vega – Miss Universe 2003 (52nd Edition)
10. Japan’s Riyo Mori – Miss Universe 2007 (56th Edition)
When the Miss Universe removed the televised scores, there was no longer a way to check whomever topped the swimsuit competition. However when the televised scores were on its last 3 years (2008-2010), it’s interesting to note that 1st runner up winners Yendi Phillips & Taliana Vargas topped the swimsuit competitions in 2008 & 2010 respectively and 3rd runner up Rachael Finch got the highest scores in 2009.
I have earlier written about countries that have managed to win major crowns in consecutive years. One particular country that have achieved that was Venezuela. One particular set of wins that stood out were those of Jacqueline Aguilera Marcano, Alicia Machado and Consuelo Adler who won Miss World 199, Miss Universe 1996 and Miss International 1997 respectively.
Jacqueline, Alicia and Consuelo were the second set of ladies coming from a single country to have won all of the 3 Alpha pageants back then? Of course, the Miss Earth wasn’t included as it started only in 2001. But these three ladies did something that only Astrid Carolina Herrera, Nina Sicilia and Barbara Palacios Teyde was able to achieve. And guess what, they also came from Venezuela!
But These three girls also have one thing in common… they all are recipients of the Miss Photogenic award. Jacqueline won the photogenic award during the Miss World pageant. Alicia was Miss Photogenic during the Miss Venezuela 1995 pageant. But it is Consuelo who is the most photogenic of them all as she won the award both in Miss Venezuela 1996 pageant as well as in Miss International 1997. In terms of height though, Alicia is the shortest of them at 5’8″. Both Consuelo and Jacqueline towers at 5’11” tall.
Did you know that Venezuela and the Philippines are record -breaking countries in terms of multiple consecutive wins in Alpha pageants? What countries have managed to win major international titles (among the four Alpha pageants) in at least 2 consecutive years?
Well you don’t need to Google them as we already did that for you. Meet the highly enviable countries that have managed to score multiple win in Miss Earth, Miss International, Miss World and Miss Universe consecutively… Sweden – 1951 Miss World Kiki Hakonsson & 1952 Miss World May Louise Flodin, they scored the first back to back wins in Miss World… which occurred two more times in the pageant’s history. Netherlands (Holland) – 1961 Miss International Stanny Van Baer & 1962 Miss World Catharina Lodders (who met her eventual husband Chubby Checkers in Manila, Philippines).
United Kingdom – 1964 Miss World Ann Sidney and 1965 Miss World Lesley Langley, they were the second back to back win in the pageant United States of America (USA) – 1973 Miss World Marjorie Wallace and 1974 Miss International Brucene Smith. India – 1999 Miss World Yukta Mookhey, 2000 Miss World Priyanka Chopra and 2000 Miss Universe Lara Dutta
Venezuela – this country has produced winners at consecutively three times all in three different decades! The pageant superpower has managed to secure 10 wins on those occasions.
* 1984 Miss World Astrid Carolina Herrera, 1985 Miss International Nina Sicilia and 1986 Miss Universe Barbara Palacios Teyde
* 1995 Miss World Jacqueline Aguilera, 1996 Miss Universe Alicia Machado and 1997 Miss International Consuelo Adler
* 2008 Miss Universe Dayana Mendoza & 2009 Miss Universe Stefania Hernandez (the first and only MU back to back so far in the pageant’s history), 2010 Miss International Elizabeth Mosquera and 2011 Miss World Ivian Sarcos
Philippines – has the record-breaking longest winning streak in the Alpha pageants from 2013 to 2017!
* 2013 Miss International Bea Rose Santiago and 2013 Miss World Megan Young
* 2014 Miss Earth Jamie Herrell
* 2015 Miss Earth Angelia Ong and 2015 Miss Universe Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach
* 2016 Miss International Kylie Verzosa
* 2017 Miss Earth Karen Ibasco
EDIT: November 11, 8:15am
After the victory of Karen Ibasco at Miss Earth, the Philippines has the longest winning streak with wins in 5 consecutive years.
Back in 2015, on my old blog, I wrote an interesting article on the top scorers in the Miss Universe pageant’s evening gown competitions. While I could no longer extract the contents from that previous article, I thought it would be interesting to do a photo-collage on the evening gown top scorers. Note that these scores were taken when the telecast would flash the scores of the girls onscreen, something that was taken out during the 2000’s.
Other girls who made it into the top 10 all time best scorers are: 6. Angela Visser, Netherlands 7. Paula Andrea Betancourt, Colombia 8. Verna Vasquez, Curacao 9. Sushmita Sen, India 10 Lana Buchberger, Canada